Apple has made some cool improvements in the WatchOS 8 update to help you locate lost AirTags directly from your Apple Watch even without an iPhone, and it also shows you where you are. I left the iPhone in itThat's a pretty big change for the Apple Watch, which was previously limited to finding people who share their locations with you, as watchOS 7 originally had a version of the old Find Friends app, and was later renamed Find Find. People or Find People.

In the watchOS 8 update, Apple left Find People untouched, and added two more apps, Find Items and Find Devices. These correspond roughly to the separate sections of the Find My app on the iPhone, and provide most of the features as well.

Not only do you know where devices are but you can also make them play a sound, set up notifications for when you forget and leave them, and even enable Lost Mode or Lost Mode, all right from your Apple Watch.

where are my things

As with the Find My app on the iPhone, Apple has divided everything into three, with separate apps for each on the Apple Watch:

people search

It's used to find people who share their location with you, and you'll only see the location of any device it's designated to share location from, in most cases, the iPhone and Apple Watch.

Find devices

This includes iPhones, iPads, all types of Macs, AirPods, AirPods Pro, AirPods Max, and even most Beats headphones. Location capabilities vary between devices. Macs don't have GPS, for example, so they use Wi-Fi location services instead, but you should at least see a public location provided for whatever's turned on. And maybe even some devices that are turned off.

Finding Items

It includes AirTags and all third-party devices that provide support for the Find My network.

Note that older second-generation AirPods do not support the new Find My network features, and therefore cannot be located in the same way as AirTags. Instead, it reports the location where they were last connected to an iPhone, iPad, or Mac.

Find your stuff

When it comes to your Apple Watch, you'll need to make sure you're opening the appropriate app, so if it's a product like AirTag or a third-party product like Chipolo ONE or Belkin earphones, you'll need to use Find Items or Find Items. Otherwise, you'll find it in the Find Devices or Find Devices app.

But the good news is that both apps mostly work the same way. Opening either will show you a list of all your devices in the appropriate category, which are presented as cards that you can swipe through with the Digital Crown, and each card shows the name of the device, the icon it represents, how far it is, and how long that location has been reported.

Cards in the Find Devices app will display a battery level indicator. This is not shown in Find Items.

Distances are shown in your default units, miles or kilometers, but you can scroll down the list to change this if you like.

Details of an item will show you a small map of its location, with the approximate address listed below. Scrolling down will bring up audio playback options to help you locate it, or get step-by-step directions to its location using Apple Maps.

If you're part of a Family Sharing or Family Sharing group, you can also see a list of family members' devices by scrolling down the list in the Find Devices app or Finding Devices and choosing Show family devices.

Note that while here you'll see a list of every device registered to your family members, you won't be able to find out where they are unless they choose to share their location with you. Sharing a device's location in a Family Sharing group is an All or Nothing setting, however, if your family members share their public location with you in Find People, you'll also be able to see where all their devices are.

Enable missing mode

The Find Devices and Find Items apps on your Apple Watch allow you to enable Lost Mode for a lost item directly from it. What actually happens depends on the target device, but the process is similar, regardless of which device you're using in Lost Mode:

◉ On the Apple Watch, open Find Items or Find Devices.

◉ Locate the device you want to put in Lost Mode, and tap on it.

◉ Scroll down the details screen and tap on Lost Mode.

◉ Tap the toggle next to Lost Mode to enable it.

◉ If prompted, choose whether you want to display an email address or phone number on your device.

◉ If prompted, confirm that you want to enable Lost Mode.

Putting your M1 Mac into Lost Mode will restart it and lock it into recovery mode, requiring you to enter your macOS password, Apple ID, and password to get back into it.

The iPad or iPhone will simply return to the Home screen, with Face ID or Touch ID disabled. In either case, Apple Pay will also be disabled, and you will need to re-enter your Apple ID password to reactivate it after logging in and disabling Lost Mode.

In comparison, an AirTag, an AirPods kit, or any other item from Find My Network simply lets you enter an email address or phone number to help anyone who finds lost items get them back to you.

You can also disable Lost Mode directly from your Apple Watch by following the steps above. This will re-enable Face ID or Touch ID, and you'll have to manually reactivate Apple Pay by entering your Apple account password.

Never forget your things again

Your Apple Watch can also notify you if you've left or forgotten an important item somewhere, whether it's an iPhone, or keys attached to an AirTag. Here's how to enable it:

◉ On the Apple Watch, open Find Items or Find Devices.

◉ Locate and tap the device for which you want to set the Left Behind notification.

◉ Scroll down the details screen and tap Notify when Left Behind.

◉ Tap the toggle next to Notify when Left Behind to enable it.

If you've previously set up Left Behind notifications from your iPhone or iPad and created exceptions, i.e. locations like your home or office where you don't want to be notified, they will appear in the Apple Watch app. You can remove these exceptions from your watch, but you cannot add new ones.

Note that Left Behind notifications aren't supported on the Apple Watch for all types of devices, and they're mostly limited to iPhones, AirTags, and third-party Find My network items.

For unsupported devices, like iPads, MacBooks, or AirPods, you'll see a note when the notification is enabled, telling you that you'll only be notified "when you unplug your iPhone, not for this watch." As long as your iPhone is with you, you'll still get notifications on your Apple Watch if you leave your AirPods or iPad behind, but they won't work when you're using your Apple Watch away from the iPhone.

Finally, there are some devices that don't support Left Behind notifications, in which case the option won't appear at all. However, most of them are pretty straightforward, like non-portable Macs like the Mac Pro or iMac.

Have you tried searching for your things using the Apple Watch? Was this article useful to you? Tell us in the comments.



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